Out-Going Steins Manager Reveals Decision-Making Process


Steins Thistle AFC are set to launch a search for their new Manager and Coaching Staff, writes Tom Scott.

Today, former boss George Ward reveals exclusively to Scottish Amateur Football News the background behind this shock decision emerging from the Spark of Genius Central Scottish AFL Club.

Said George “The last game we played before Covid-19 was a promotion decider against Gartcosh and although we lost it, that was the night we felt we had a team ready for success for the following season – and then Covid hit.”

“Myself George Ward (Manager), Kenny Ferguson and Sam McCue (Assistants) had been approached by David George as the new Management team back at the tail end of 2018. The Club were going through a transition period and a lot of players moved on. However, there were players whom we owe a great gratitude to as they didn’t give up on us.”

“There came a very low point against Stenhousemuir in the Scottish Cup. After the game I reached out to the McRoberts twins, and David Weir, all legends at the Club, to come in and play as they had watched that day.”

“There was no hesitation and they re-joined the Club. Adding those three to that core of experienced players started to show on the pitch, and some of the football was superb to watch. The guy’s experience and encouragement started to bring on the younger guys. The game at Gartcosh that night was a big moment for us as we felt good going into the following season. Football then got suspended for a lengthy time.”

“We did start to wonder how many would actually return and how many players’ mind sets this would affect right across the Amateur game. Some of our senior guys retired, they had been loyal and outstanding for us. Other players had work or other commitments that would also prevent them from returning.”

“When we started adding the numbers up, we felt it was another rebuilding job. We explained to our Committee we felt it was in the best interest of the Club if we stepped aside and allowed someone else to come in who could bring new players. It wasn’t that we didn’t want to be at the Club – it was purely a football decision.”

“There are guys like Chipper, Wull, Sharpy and Beastie who have given their all to Steins for years, and yes we could have kept going, but these guys deserved more than us just getting by with thirteen bodies. Steins are a top Amateur Club who need someone to come in with a fresh intake of players to get them back to where they belong.”

“We look back at this disappointed as it was a tough start, but we had turned that corner.”

“We would have liked to have gave the Committee and the players that bit of success, but it just didn’t happen, and with Covid hitting when it did, it ended up bad timing. However, it was certainly not all doom and gloom.”

“The ups certainly out-weighed any downs. Our Captain Steven Desmond and Vice- Captain Ross Fox are two class acts, and supported us right through our time. The other experienced guys, like David Fowler, Grant Scobbie, Alan Pacitti, Darren Hughes and Ryan Scobbie, again class acts and backed us all the way. The guys certainly gave it their all and we cannot question any of their commitment or work rate. Other guys that we brought in again fitted in with the current squad and added quality.”

“We all feel privileged for the opportunity given to us at Steins, and the next Management team will gain a fantastic Club with fantastic facilities. Note of interests have started to come in, and that can be done via the Twitter or Facebook accounts. At this time though, I personally would like to thank all the players who have played under us. The Committee for backing us and having everything set- up. To everyone who sponsored us, it’s not easy or cheap running a team, so again thank you.”

“Good luck to the next Management team and all the success to Steins in the future, it genuinely has been a pleasure.”

2015 East Of Scotland Cup: Steins Thistle AFC – Road To The Final With David George

David George was a former member of the Steins Thistle AFC backroom when they won back-to-back East of Scotland Cup Finals, writes Tom Scott.

Today, David reveals the detailed Club Information which had to be presented to the Cup Committee prior to the 2015 Final against Dunblane Thistle.

It was another great celebration for Steins. who went on to win the match 4-2.

Back row left to right – Robert Henderson (Chairman) Tam McGrellis (coach) Jim shedden (Physio) Andrew Mcroberts, Michael Kane, Gordon Herd, David Kane, Steven Desmond, Gordon Mcroberts (Captain) Marc McCafferty, Gordon Passmore, Wullie Dunsmore (secretary) Tam Young (Manager), Davie George (assistant manager) Front Row left to right  – Jason Weir (Kit man) David Weir, Andrew Mochan, Chris Campbell, Ross Fox, Ryan Scobbie, Cammy Mcvicar, Danny Brown, Lawrence Brown. Missing from photo – Andrew Sharp (Committee member and life member of the club) Barry Allan, David Fowler, Paddy Kelly, Jamie Baxter, Steven Donachy

Steins Thistle Amateurs were formed in January 1970 as the works team of G.R Stein brick works in Allandale near Bonnybridge. The brick works provided a pitch for the team and when the company folded ownership of the park was transferred to the football club, which they still retain to this day. In recent years the club has built a new pavilion and spent a lot of money on the park and also introduced a new 3g training area giving Steins Thistle one of the best set ups in Amateur football also providing for the hole club from fun 7s up to the under 21s.

Steins Thistle Amateurs play in the Fosters Central League. Managed by Tam Young, coaches are Davie George and Tam McGrellis, secretary is Wullie Dunsmore, physio Jim Shedden, committee members Andrew Sharp and Chairman Robert Henderson. They are currently top of the league and looking to gain promotion back to the premier league.

Steins Thistle Amateurs have reached the final of the East of Scotland 4 times in the past 6 years.

• 2009 Steins Thistle lost 4-3 to the Bluebell
• 2010 Steins Thistle lost 3-0 to Falkirk Amateurs
• 2014 Steins Thistle beat Braehead to lift the East of Scotland for the first time in the clubs history.
• 2015 Steins Thistle again have reached the final were they will face Dunblane Thistle.

Steins road to the final started on Saturday 20th of September were the faced much fancied and favourites for the cup Doune Castle were they triumphed 1-0 thanks to an Andrew Mochan goal.

2nd round Steins Travelled to Civil Service Strollers were they won comfortably 9-0 with a hat-trick from Cammy Mcvicar and goals from Andrew and Gordon Mcroberts, David Fowler, Chris Campbell, Michael Kane and Steven Desmond.

3rd round Steins Travelled to Beechwood from Stirling were again they won comfortably 4-1 with 2 goals from Andrew Mcroberts and goals from Marc McCafferty and Ryan Scobbie so Steins come out worthy winners.

4th round Steins again went on there travels at the start of the year in January this time the short distance to ochilview were they faced Stenhousemuir Community in front of a large crowd with Andrew Mcroberts scoring the only goal to send Steins through.

Quarter final so Steins again with another away tie against local rivals Bonnybridge AFC that attracted over a crowd of 200 people. This was great to see for 2 local amateur teams. The only goal of the game was scored by Steven Desmond to send Steins into the semi-finals.

Semi-final was a natural venue were it was an exact copy of last seasons semi-final were Steins faced Edinburgh side Tollcross Thistle. Goals either side of half time from Michael Kane and Ryan Scobbie so Steins run out winners 2-1 on the night and reach the final for the 4th time in 6 years.

Tam Young (Manager) – Tam started his Steins career at 16 years old when he played for the Amateurs for the first time. Tam was a commanding centre half that never shirked a tackle or header and always gave 100%. He played his entire career at Steins with a brief spell at junior side Steelend. Tam and side kick Tam McGrellis had a spell as manager and assistant at Cambusbarron Rovers from the Caledonian league and also took youth teams at Steins Thistle Club. Tam has a very commanding and is very instrumental manner that all the players respect and Tam is very well thought of in the game.

David George (Assistant Manager) – Davie centre midfield maestro played for a very successful Grahamston team at youth level winning a lot of honours. He then went on to play for Bonnybridge Juniors, Dunipace Juniors before joining Steins Thistle were he played for several seasons before taking up a coaching roll in 2008 were in his first season won the Fosters central league division 1 and got to the East of Scotland final. Davie had a break from football but has come back with the hunger and desire that all clubs throughout would love to have.

Tam McGrellis (Assistant coach) – Tam tricky midfielder/striker was part of a very successful Grahamston team winning a lot of honours. He had a brief spell at Stenhousemuir before trying his luck in the junior game with Bonnybridge Juniors were he played for a few seasons and was part of a successful team gaining promotion to the top league. Tam then moved on to Steins and again spent the rest of his career. Tam had a coaching spell at Cambusbarron Rovers as Tams assistant before taking the youth teams at Steins. Tam got the call straight away from his right hand man and works as a great buffer between players and coaches. Tam is great to have around the club and has been instrumental in the clubs success story so far.